Desktop 1200 PPC Upgrades, a picture story.

r0jaws

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You may have noticed but I love Amiga photo stories. I'm into following what people get upto with their miggy's and love the hardware pron and their trials and tribulations.
To that end, I'm about to enter the tantalising void that is Amiga PPC and thought some of you maybe interested to see what happens.
I recently bought a Phase 5: Blizzard PPC 603 Accelerator with a Bvision Graphics card and OS4.
Now I've had all sorts of accelerators in the past, and have been happily running various flavours of workbench for a while and hadn't even thought of going any further until, on a random whim, I decided to put in an offer on this kit on this very site.
I admit, I know nothing whatsoever about Amiga PPC or OS4. I am hoping to learn fairly rapidly. There will be a modicum of hackery involved in the eventual upgrades, I intend to try and cram everything into a desktop case.

This will eventually include;
a1200 1d4 mobo (obviously),
3.1 Roms,
Indivision SD/FF,
Bvision 8mb graphics card,
Internal VGA switcher (to swap between Indy and Bvision outputs.)
2x 4Gb CF Cards with IDE adapter (to be mounted to allow easy swapping without opening the case so that I can switch between WB3.1 and OS4 on separate drives),
Pico PSU, internally mounted,
Internal DVD/CDRW combo slimline drive,
Blizzard PPC 603 Accelerator

I really like the original Amiga Case, Tower's are very practical, but I much prefer the Classic "zero footprint" Miggy cases.
Cooling will be a big problem, as will space, but if a 1200 can be squeezed into a 600's case, this should be a doddle.
Anyhoo, lets get started;
The parts arrive, there's nothing quite like the feeling of unpacking new(ish) kit. :thumbsup2:
01-Unpacked.jpg


Unwrapping, and generally basking in the glow.
02-Unwrapped.jpg


The Blizzard, now that is sexh!
03-BlizzardPPC-Front.jpg

04-BlizzardPPC-Back.jpg


The Bvision graphics card, looking forward to playing with this'
05-Bvision.jpg


Sliding the Blizzard into her new home, tight fit.
06-Installed.jpg


There's also nothing quite like the feeling just before you flick the switch for the first time, then the anxious wait while she boots, just waiting for the first indication of a foul up, then Pow, Workbench-tastic. :D :D
07-FirstBoot.jpg


Ever mindful of the need for extra cooling, I left the trapdoor off, and elevated my Miggy with the use of these handy CF card cases.
08-TemporaryFeet.jpg


My rather spiffy desktop,
09-Screenshot01.jpg


Mips and mflops, beautiful.
10-Screenshot02.jpg


Sysinfo,
11-Screenshot03.jpg


A bit of web browsing with an 060, no longer grinding along like a wall eyed, epileptic sloth. :mrgreen:
12-Screenshot04.jpg


Rest assured miggy fans, there will be more to follow. 8)
 

RedDaemonFox

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Re: Desktop 1200 PPC Upgrades, a picture story.

good setup. I like the cases too, and wish someone would step up and make a new accelerator using two or more 603's (think be-box) and 256 MB RAM, a new GFX card with *gasp* 64 MB RAM. :drool: Man I wish!
 

Zetr0

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Re: Desktop 1200 PPC Upgrades, a picture story.

MmmmmmmmmMMMMmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm YUMMY!!!!!
 

TheCorfiot

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Re: Desktop 1200 PPC Upgrades, a picture story.

Zetr0 said:
MmmmmmmmmMMMMmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm YUMMY!!!!!

I Know, And it's up the road from you and you can visit and have access anytime you like, Just got to sort out the custody battle now :LOL:

Seriously Phil, Congratulations she is a beauty. If anyone really deserved such a cool setup.......It's you my friend...

Enjoy

TC :drool:
 

RedDaemonFox

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Re: Desktop 1200 PPC Upgrades, a picture story.

If you're gonna continue that setup, maybe a fan or water cooler should be added to the trap door slot, as well as a heatsink to the 060
 

Kin Hell

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Re: Desktop 1200 PPC Upgrades, a picture story.

Nice one r0jaws. (y)

Kin
 

r0jaws

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Re: Desktop 1200 PPC Upgrades, a picture story.

Dreamcast270mhz said:
If you're gonna continue that setup, maybe a fan or water cooler should be added to the trap door slot, as well as a heatsink to the 060

You know, we were talking about passive water-cooling for this bad boy just last week. Watch this space. :wink:
 

r0jaws

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Re: Desktop 1200 PPC Upgrades, a picture story.

Ok, time for an update.
Ive been running with the PPC installed since it arrived, but hadn't got round to testing out the Bvision just yet.
Sunday night saw that change, over to Zetro's for an evening of hackery and fun!
Opening up the 1200 and installing the Bvision is a learning curve, and it also highlighted a small problem. The Bvision and Indivision are physically incompatible in standard configuration.
The VGA cable port on the Indivision obstructs the Bvision by about 5mm, bummer. That said, we wanted this to be able to support both outputs so a modicum of hackery will be involved. Pictures will follow.
Anyhoo, while Keith sorted out a lovely 200w PSU hack I cobbled all the bits together. Being ambitious, I hooked up the CDROM as well via an idefix, hoping we might be able to get lucky and crack on with installing OS4.0
That was a little previous. :(
After rigorously testing the PSU, we hooked it up and flicked the switch. To say that I nearly did what my dear mother patiently taught me not to do in my trousers 30 years ago, would be an understatement.
A small cloud of smoke was curling upwards from my Miggy! F*%k!!!
After yanking the cable out and patiently taking the whole machine to bits we found out that it was the VGA cable for my Indivision. I had been a little lazy, and figuring a VGA cable was pretty much the same anywhere had connected the Indy's VGA cable to the Bvision.
The line from port 8 heated up so much it melted the plastic shielding but luckily that was the only damage! A continuity check of the cable revealed that the lines were all still good, so a bit of insulating tape and bingo, instant fix.

InstallingatKeiths1.jpg

Phew!

Connecting up the Bvision's VGA cable saw it fire up no problem. At least this proves the Bvision is working. One objective achieved at least.
InstallingatKeiths.jpg


Unfortunately it was getting rather late, and whilst Keith was all revved up to go, I was starting to feel the effects.
Back home, after a bit of kip, I set about starting again. This time with the aim to install OS 4.0.

Installing0.jpg


The setup was similar to at Keith's except that I had to change the CDROM, as the adpater on my slimline drive appears to conflict with the IDEFix board. :( (definitely something to work on later)

Installing1.jpg


Firing up the new PSU saw it all spring to life beautifully. It booted off the floppy and after a while hung not responding to anything. A look in the troubleshooting section of the installation manual reveals that occasionally the CDROM does not respond quickly enough, but a 3 fingered salute should sort that problem. It did, and after a minute I found my Miggy booting off the CDROM and into the installation sequence.

I've never used OS 4.0, or even seen it running so this was all new to me. It looked pretty smooth, considering the age of the kit involved. Although it does take a while to bring up each option. But then it is running at 160 Mhz.

The installation went swimmingly, and I was able to select the options that seemed the most appropriate. The options were well described and it all seemed fairly straightforward.

Installing4.jpg


Time for a reboot and a play,

Installing7.jpg


Bugg@r. :Doh:

Oh well, there's always tomorrow. :D
 

Zetr0

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Re: Desktop 1200 PPC Upgrades, a picture story.

Looks positively AWESOME!

InstallingatKeiths.jpg


the irony of that picture eh?

Had a lot of fun that night, I think its the longest I have seen our dear r0jaws consious... well except for byte-back :)

looking forward to Friday hackery indeed!!! :D
 

TheCorfiot

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Re: Desktop 1200 PPC Upgrades, a picture story.

@rojaws

She's coming along very nicely my friend. Zeet's mentioned you had a bit of magic smoke and will need to remove the Indivision Header to fit both cards in situ.
There's usually no room for guess's or mistakes with old rare kit like this and I am really glad no damage was sustained...Take your time & double check everything..

I'm sure you will get OS 4 up & running my friend, from the piccies it looks 99.9% there, I can't help with the DH0 - DOS error i'm afraid as I've never attempted to install it so know nothing about it...

Thanks for this very interesting Photo Story, the Hardware pr0n is totally fab :drool:

Keep it coming and Best of luck

Regards
TC (y)
 

Magno Boots

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Re: Desktop 1200 PPC Upgrades, a picture story.

I'm enjoying this thread also.

Great pictures and a nice breakdown of events (y)

May I suggest that you try a different CF card to that one shown in the picture. I have used this type previously and found them nothing but trouble. They worked intermittently and had to be disguarded.

Regards
Magno
 

davideo

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Re: Desktop 1200 PPC Upgrades, a picture story.

[quote="r0jaws
Installing1.jpg

[/quote]

I love the toilet roll insulation :)

Dave G 8)
 

Kin Hell

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Re: Desktop 1200 PPC Upgrades, a picture story.

Heck Phil. Lucky with that smoking cable m8y. I had 30 Amps ground itself to the Floppy Port. No amount of nano-second speed would have saved my old 1D4. I recall getting off on the smell at the time. :jester:

RE your DH0 coming up as non DOS after the reboot, I have seen the same. It was something to do with the file system used during the partition choice prior to installation. Look at the partitioning layout within the set up process. I can't remember if it was Green or Orange that worked. The colour of the Partition changes depending on the choice of File System & for the life in me, I can't remember what colour relates to what File System.
Another possibility is dual booting. If you selected the OS4 Partition from a cold boot, did it pick up the OS4 Partition after kicking Kickstart 4 into Ram a resetting thereafter? Boot Priority on the Hard drives will sort it & setting the OS4 Partition higher than OS3.9 will mean it will boot OS4 fine. Kinda all cocks up though when you want to use OS3.9. One of the reasons I gave up with OS4 as OS3.9 is more useful. :whistle:

Still, hope the info helps & I just gotta say, I'm loving the squashed bog roll tube for IDE cable insulation. Get ur Big Bore Bog rolls out eh! :laugh:

Kin

*Edit* - Feck....pipped by Dave on the Bog Roll tube! :ROTFLOL2:
 

davideo

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Re: Desktop 1200 PPC Upgrades, a picture story.

Kin Hell said:
*Edit* - Feck....pipped by Dave on the Bog Roll tube! :ROTFLOL2:

:jester:

I've used many a bit of thick card to insulate stuff inside Amigas and PCs (y) It makes a good temporary insulator.

Dave G 8)
 

r0jaws

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Re: Desktop 1200 PPC Upgrades, a picture story.

Ok, a few more steps down the path to Amiga bliss.
Last time I was having problems getting OS 4 installed and then to boot up, I have made some progress with that.
I did manage to get it to display the OS4 kick ROM, for those who have never seen that here you go;

OS4Installed.jpg


Whilst this was an improvement it was hardly what I was after.
I went back to basics, and dug out the OS 4 manual. There were a few important changes with the hard disc set up.
Primarily there were a few steps that I had missed. In Media Toolbox, I had to re-install the RDB and when I had the program read the hard disc configuration, there were numerous changes that had to be saved.
Also OS4 provide the opportunity to set up your hard disc with several partition 'templates'. I selected the 'Standard OS 4' template rather than the single 4Gb partition I had set up before.
This sets up a 400Mb partition, a 300Mb Swap file and a 3Gb partition.
The 'Swap' file is unusually not actually used but according to the manual is incase it's needed for future upgrade of OS 4. :nuts:
Oh well, I'll leave it as they recommend just to see if it works.
Anyhow, after re-installing the OS I took the plunge and switched off the miggy for 15 secs before switching it back on.
The Hard Drive activity light was spinning up nicely and monitor registers an output. However after a few seconds she reboots and sits there doing nothing. After a read through the manual about the boot sequence it seems that the hard drive fires up using the 3.1 ROMs, the startup-sequence loads a 'bootloader', this installs the 4.0 Kickstart into memory, protects it and reboots.
I guessed that for some reason, the miggy is going through all the routines above but doesn't seem to be able to get past the reboot phase. I try a 3 finger salute, and after about 1 minute, success! OS 4 running on my miggy.
A few retries confirms that, from a cold boot, I have to wait until the system hangs in its startup sequence, then give it a warm boot to finally get the OS loaded. A bit messy but at least it works for the time being.

OS4Installed1.jpg


I then turned my attention to my non working laptop CDRom, swapped over the adapter with another spare, hooked it up and that seemed to do the trick.

OS4Installed3.jpg


Finally, I had been using a desk fan to help keep the Bvision cool, but really wanted to get the case back together. Having a dig about I found an old AMD CPU fan in my bits box which was quiet and seemed to provide a nice level of airflow. A bit of soldering to the floppy power cable and I had an extra bit of airflow to temporarily keep the Bvision a little cooler until I sort out a more permanent solution.

OS4Installed4.jpg


After replacing the indivision VGA cable with the Bvision one, it was time to put my baby back together.

OS4Installed5.jpg


So far so good, next step, installing the wireless network, getting internet access up, installing the PCMCIA CF flash adapter, installing the Indivision, fixing up an internal VGA switcher, and preparing for the extra cooling and the new case.
More to follow. :D
 

rkauer

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Re: Desktop 1200 PPC Upgrades, a picture story.

Indeed a lovely Amiga! (y) :drool:

Some words of advice: use some sort of tape to close the vents to force the hot air to exhaust trough the fan. If you can find one, a notebook vertical fan blowing air laterally the BVision heatsink will make wonders for the machine stability.
 

Zetr0

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Re: Desktop 1200 PPC Upgrades, a picture story.

Truly STUNNING!!!

I am begining to see the reason people are passionate about the PPC to be honest...

I am guessing a PPC version of linux is out there already, I know theres a version of AROS which might interest you.

I would love to see WipEout 2097 / Quake and a couple of other run too :D


there are also a fair few Linux emulators, including DOSBox, GBA, SNES, Megadrive to mention just a few...

lol I cna see you building the Ultimate boot option for you miggy.... (well you do have the 300MB space reserved for something right?!) :)

some great work indeed my friend!
 

r0jaws

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Re: Desktop 1200 PPC Upgrades, a picture story.

Ok time for a big update.
One of the key things that I wanted to achieve with this build was to be the first to have an Indivision SD/FF fitted and running alongside the Bvision. This will enable me to dual boot the system, effectively giving me 2 computers in one chassis.
An AGA, 060 system running WB 3.1, and a PPC 3D Graphics enhanced OS 4 system. (y)
Unfortunately the Indivision's VGA socket physically obstructs the installation of the Bvivion, so some hackery was required to get both in.
Thankfully Zetro offered to help out with the hack, as TBH my soldering skills are rudimentary at best. All work in the following photos is down to him, and for that he has my sincere thanks. Cheers buddy :yourock:
Anyhoo, first things first time to remove the socket.
pic-1.jpg


Looots of Flux, yummy.
pic-2.jpg


Removing that pesky solder
pic-4.jpg


Ready for the next stage
pic-6.jpg


Attatching the cable, both sides
pic-1-1.jpg


pic-3.jpg


Re-attaching the adapter
pic-6-1.jpg

pic-8.jpg


Before going any further, a continuity test, make sure that it all works!
pic-1-2.jpg


Everything is good to go, so time to hot glue and shrink seal the job for a more secure connector and a professional look.
pic-3-1.jpg

pic-4-1.jpg


Job done, nice and neat.
pic-5.jpg


Fitting the board back in with the Bvision in place, Result. :thumbsup2:
pic-11.jpg

Close up
pic-12.jpg


Very nice indeed. :D
I am planning on hacking an internal VGA switcher, but for the time being, until I get that sorted out, the switcher will be external. So to that end I needed room for a second VGA output. Fortunately the 1200 also sports an RF output. This is a fairly reduntant output for me, and is also a convenient size.
Removing it is a 10 minute job, or is it? :whistle:

This went all the way upto 480 deg C!! It was one stubborn component. Unfortunately the body acts as a heatsink and draws the heat away from the point to be desoldered, combined with the fact that old solder needs more heat anyway and this ended up being a real battle of wills!
pic-1-3.jpg


The hot air really came into it's own, as did a convenient screwdriver to lever that bad boy off.
pic-3-2.jpg


Nothing can resist the unstoppable force that is Zetro!!
pic-04.jpg

pic-5-1.jpg

:bowdown:

Clean up and Job done,
pic-6-2.jpg

pic-7.jpg


Final stage is to wham it all back together and get testing!
Firstly the Indivision,
Testing02.jpg


No problems here, now for the Bvision,
Testing03.jpg


Both are working fine, no problem. However, the KVM switch does not seem to like the Bvision output at all. :(
A bit of investigation is required here I fancy, Zetro had pointed out a few cheap KVM switches online, I feel a bit of experimentation coming on.
Unfortunately, there have been a few casualties on the way so far. Firstly was my camera, an old 3 Mpixel digital that I've had for a few years. It ate batteries, but gave out reasonable results so I had it hooked up to a power adpater. After I unplugged it the other day, without thinking I put the voltage back upto 9v from the 3v it had been set at, unfortunately there was still some charge left in the pack and that was the end of that camera. :(
Also the CF card with my 3.1 installation on it had developed an obstruction in one of it's slots somehow. That meant that not only could I not get it to fit in the CF adapter, it caused one of the pins to detatch and break :( :(
So, I have 3 new adapters and a new CF card on order, and am looking at a new camera too!
All the pics upto the last 2 were taken with Zetro's new camera, a Panasonic Lumix DMC FZ28.
A really nice piece of kit, I am seriously thinking of getting hold of myself. A really cracking review can be found on Youtube HERE.
next stage is finding a reliable KVM, and getting a classic version of WB installed on the new CF card. I may even give 3.9 a go, I have the CD, but have never really given it a go.
Stay tuned sports fans. :D
 

scrappysphinx

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Re: Desktop 1200 PPC Upgrades, a picture story.

@r0jaws,

pm sent regarding KVM

Mike
 
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